Graphic Novel Review: Marvel Platinum: The Definitive Spider-Man Redux

Marvel Platinum: The Definitive Spider-Man Redux

Marvel Platinum: The Definitive Spider-Man Redux - Credit: Archant

(Panini Books)

The man called Mysterio, master of illusions, is the subject of this latest movie tie-in collection of Spidey strips, which cover the protagonists' decades-spanning conflict in style.

Stuntman and special effects artist Quentin Beck used his skills for crime after becoming frustrated with what he perceived to be a lack of appreciation for his work, and made his debut impersonating Spider-Man using his technological talents in a bid to frame the web-slinger.

Far more than just smoke and mirrors, this collection is a celebration of a villain who is not-quite Spidey's greatest foe, but a worthy opponent nonetheless. After all, who else would have been able to convince the wall-crawler he was going insane, his Aunt May had died, or that the planet-eating Galactus had killed the X-Men, Avengers and Fantastic Four?

This collection also sees Mysterio team up with the Wingless Wizard in a bid to destroy Spidey and the Human Torch, a Civil War-era story of the armoured arachnid following the revelation of his secret identity to the world, and the first issue of the latest Amazing Spider-Man volume.

Creative talent includes the likes of Stan Lee, Marv Wolfman, Peter David, Steve Dikto, Sal Buscema and Todd McFarlane, and the book wraps up with a detailed history of the different criminals who have adopted the moniker of Mysterio and various creators' behind-the-scenes commentary.

But the unsung hero behind this volume and the rest of the acclaimed Marvel Platinum: Definitive imprint has to be Brady Webb from Panini UK, whose encyclopaedic knowledge of comics history must be credited for the first-rate collections he puts together to accompany the release of every new Marvel movie. Although a handful of landmark issues are included for completion's sake, he also takes the time to look beyond the norm and always features an unexpected selection of rarely seen tales. Long may they continue.